Architecti et usus meditatio: Vitruvian Echoes in Contemplative Practice

A webinar with Peter Schneider, Professor of Architecture and Chancellor’s Scholar, College of Architecture and Planning, University of Colorado Denver
Wednesday, December 1, 2010

This webinar explores the effects of Vitruvius’ 1st century BCE descriptions of meditatio and contemplatio as they ripple through the history of architecture’s practices. Vitruvius’ words establish meditatio–from the Greek medesthai–as the essential mode that the way that architects do their work: the singular practice of attending to what they are doing while they are doing what they are attending to. Contemplatio–as it was understood in Vitruvius’ time–is also a term that has its origins in architecture’s ancient practices. The connection Vitruvius makes between architecture and contemplative practice is consequently historically grounded, and has much to teach us. The webinar will also explore the rich possibilities inherent in the practices of meditatio and contemplatio in contemporary higher education: of learning by attentively doing the things that one wants to learn about.

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